Welcome to Cvent’s Toledo meeting planning guide – a Toledo city guide for meeting planners. A remarkably vibrant and modern locale, Toledo's affordable hotels, diverse meeting spaces, and top-notch attractions combine to create a destination that complements any meeting or convention. Meanwhile, just an hour away, Detroit Metro Airport provides non-stop service to over 160 destinations worldwide.
Once in the city, most meeting guests will want to head straight downtown to the SeaGate Convention Centre, the city's largest meeting facility. For large-scale Toledo meeting planning, this location is prime. Boasting 75,000 square-feet of column-free exhibit space, 20,000 square feet of pre-function space and 23 high-tech meeting rooms, SeaGate has been the site of choice for everything from graduations and car shows to tradeshows and banquets. What's more, SeaGate is located adjacent to the Park Inn Toledo and Hotel SeaGate, which combined offer more than 600 guest rooms.
Just steps away from the SeaGate Convention Centre, meeting planners will find the Huntington Center home to the Toledo Walleye ice hockey team and Toledo Bullfrogs arena football team as well as a state-of-the-art performance and special Toledo event venues. It features several party suites for groups of 16 to 25 guests, as well as the Aquarium and the Club Level Lounge for dinners and receptions of up to 200 and 600 guests, respectively. The Huntington Center also boasts outdoor event space at two spacious terraces.
To break out of the routine, Toledo offers a wide range of historical attractions, museums and restaurants that double as fantastic private event spaces. Moored alongside International Park, the S.S. Willis B. Boyer is not only the largest museum ship in the U.S. but also a memorable event facility. Here, guests of weddings, parties, corporate luncheons and more enjoy scenic views of Toledo skyline and a romantic maritime environment.
Back on land, the Toledo Museum of Art's gorgeous Glass Pavilion, which houses over 5,000 pieces of eye-catching glass works, is a unique backdrop for receptions and galas of up to 300 guests. The numerous galleries, courts and terraces of the art museum itself also lend themselves to events of all types and sizes.
Beyond its tourism and convention business, Toledo is the primary market city for northwest Ohio, known for its strong economy built on industrial manufacturing, glassware and healthcare. The city is home to the headquarters for Owens Corning, Dana Holding Corporation, Health Care REIT, Inc., and Libbey Inc. The Toledo metropolitan region is also home to the University of Toledo, Bowling Green State University, Lourdes College, Mercy College and Davis College, among others.
Arts, shopping, sports, dining – Toledo, Ohio, manages to pack all this and more within its 84 square miles. Located along the beautiful Maumee River at the southern end of Maumee Bay – the western-most inlet of Lake Erie – the city of Toledo itself is home to just over 315,000 residents, while the Great Lakes Megalopolis of which it is part has a population of 54 million people. A meeting point of Indian trails and pioneer excursions, Toledo was first settled by Americans in 1794, though it was not until the late 19th century that the city blossomed into an industrial hub. Furniture producers, glass companies and carriage makers were among the industries that carried Toledo to become one of the largest cities in Ohio by 1880.
Today, Toledo's storied past can be explored at every turn; in fact, many of its most popular visitor attractions have historic roots. The 10-acre Fort Meigs, the largest wooden-walled fortification in North America, immerses guests in the stories of the War of 1812 and frontier times in Ohio. Visitors can take a walk on the decks of what was once the largest vessel on the Great Lakes at the Willis B. Boyer Museum Ship, now permanently moored alongside International Park. Or, tour Sylvania Historic Village, site of the oldest train depot in the state, a replica 1840s timberframe barn, and an authentic Quarry Stone schoolhouse.
Perhaps one of the most notable locations to enjoy Toledo's history is at Historic Old West End. The 25 blocks of this large neighborhood encompass one of the largest collections of late Victorian houses still standing in the country, including pristine examples of Georgian, Italian Renaissance, Dutch Colonial, Arts and Crafts and Queen Ann styles of architecture. Among them, visitors will find the 10,000-square-foot, 18-room home of Edward Drummond Libbey, who’s Libbey Glass Company helped contribute to Toledo's immense glass empire.
History buffs aren't the only ones who will find something to love about Toledo. Take a walk on the wild side at Toledo Zoo, home to over 6,000 animals including the exotic birds, turtles and goats of the new Nature's Neighborhood children's zoo. Hit the links on the shores of Lake Erie at the Eagles Landing Golf Club, just nine miles outside of downtown. Catch the Toledo Mud Hens, the AAA affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, play at the new Fifth Third Field. Or, take in the enchanting collection of antique lithophanes – three-dimensional porcelain castings – at the Blair Museum of Lithophanes.
Thanks to an ever-expanding nightlife scene, the fun doesn't stop in Toledo once the sun goes down. Grab a seat at the Toledo Opera, which recently celebrated 50 years of top-notch performances of Carmen, Candide, Madama Butterfly and numerous other classics. Enjoy Cajun dishes and some of the best jazz in the Midwest at Murphy's Place, which showcases national touring artists, regional performers and local favorites six nights a week. The lively Club Eclipse merges modern sound technology with the historical elegance of the 1930s bank in which is located, now equipped with spacious seating, a top-shelf bar and original Henri Matisse paintings.
For a more low-key night on the town, guests can turn to Toledo's international dining scene. The cozy, casual Mancy's Italian Grill serves innovative Italian fusion dishes, while margaritas, fajitas, and enchiladas are always on the menu at Loma Linda's, which has been serving Mexican food in the area since 1955. Seafood is best enjoyed on the waterfront at riverside restaurants such as The Docks and Cousino's Navy Bistro.
Of course, no trip to Toledo would be complete without a taste of the world-famous Hungarian hot dogs and chili at Tony Packo's, a Toledo favorite for over 75 years. Offering not just great food, Packo's is an attraction in and of itself for those looking to see the hot dog buns signed by celebrities and presidential candidates that now adorn the restaurant's walls.
All average costs based on U.S. Government Per Diem rates as published by the U.S. General Services Administration.
Toledo's climate is marked by four distinct seasons that vary significantly in temperature and precipitation. Nearby Lake Erie freezes over more readily than the other Great Lakes, lending to Toledo's cold winters with average high temperature in the mid-30s. January is the city's coldest month, with average high temperatures in the low 30s and average snowfall of two inches.
July is the city's warmest month, with high temperatures averaging 87°F and overnight low temperatures averaging 66°F. June brings the most rain of the year at just under four inches. The best time to visit Toledo is during the late spring or early fall, during which time guests can enjoy mild temperatures and only moderate rainfall.
Seagate Convention Center
The largest convention and meeting facility in Toledo, the SeaGate Convention Centre is located in the heart of vibrant downtown Toledo. The 375,000-square-foot facility offers 23 fully-appointed meeting rooms, 20,000 square feet of pre-function space, and 75,000 square feet of column-free exhibit space, which is divisible into three distinct halls. This sizable exhibit hall can accommodate 9,000 guests alone and is one of the most versatile event facilities in Toledo.
With such a versatile array of meeting options, it's no surprise that SeaGate hosts more than 500 events annually, including conventions, industry tradeshows, local consumer shows, concerts and entertainment events. Its open, light-filled design and sprawling square footage allow for easy expansion and movement and provide a welcoming atmosphere for any type of event.
Amenities offered at the SeaGate Convention Centre include 380 underground parking spaces, 200 parking spaces in an adjoining lot and nearly 6,000 additional parking spaces within easy walking distance of the facility. This Toledo meeting facility also provides a full suite of audio-visual, sound and lighting services, as well as full catering and concessions services. The center is located adjacent to the Park Inn Toledo hotel and just three blocks from the Crowne Plaza Hotel, which combined offer over 600 guest rooms.
The Huntington Center is Northwest Ohio's premier sports and entertainment complex. In addition to serving as home to the ECHL Walleye Hockey Team and the Toledo Bullfrogs arena football team, the center also welcomes a number of concerts, tradeshows, community events and more throughout the year. It is also one of the nation's first LEED-certified professional sports arenas, boasting, among other green elements, a 900-square-foot "green wall" on the exterior that uses plant life to help cool the facility by shading its main entrance.
One of the largeter Toledo meeting facilities, the massive 266,000-square-foot facility features over 8,000 seats as well as 22 suites and two 525-square-foot party suites, perfect for small groups of 16 to 25 guests looking to enjoy a show or game in a private setting. The Huntington Center also offers its Lighthouse Terrace, Dragonfly Terrace, Club Level Lounge and spacious Aquarium for private rentals. Additionally, its 4,248-square-foot Banquet Room can accommodate groups in theater, classroom or banquet style arrangements
Gladieux Catering, a Toledo favorite for over 60 years, is the center's exclusive caterer, crafting memorable fare for events of 20 to 200 guests. Parking is available at the Port Lawrence parking garage, attached to the center via skywalk, as well as at various lots and garages surrounding the facility.
Toledo Express Airport (TOL)
Approximate taxi fare: $44.37 USD
Located just 10 miles west of downtown Toledo, Toledo Express Airport serves as a small regional hub for the area. Toledo Express offers one-stop service to domestic and international destinations, as well as non-stop service to Tampa, Chicago and Detroit.
Owned by the city of Toledo, the airport is also a base for the Ohio Air National Guard. Toledo Express features a full food court and retail area, children's play area, short- and long-term parking, and wireless Internet for a small fee.
Airline carriers serving Toledo Express Airport
Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW)
Approximate taxi fare: $131.11 USD
Located about an hour's drive outside of Toledo, the sprawling Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, also known as Detroit Metro Airport, is ranked among the world's largest air transportation hubs. Offering non-stop service to over 160 destinations worldwide, Detroit Metropolitan serves as the 2nd-largest hub for Delta and is a major base for Spirit Airlines.
The airport offers a full suite of passenger amenities, including its award-winning concessions, retail and food and beverage program. With more than 120 on-site restaurants and retail shops, Detroit Metropolitan has earned accolades such as "Airport with the Best Overall Concession Program" and "Airport with the Most Unique Services" by Airport Revue News. Guests to the airport can park in more than 19,000 short- and long-term parking spaces. The airport also features more than 19,000 short- and long-term parking spaces, which can be accessed via a free shuttle service.
The luxurious 404-room Western Detroit Metropolitan Airport hotel is located within the airport's world-class McNamara Terminal. The hotel features a full-service business center and 36,000 square feet of flexible event space including a 7,300-square-foot ballroom and 34 meeting rooms.
Airline carriers serving Detroit Metro Airport
The Toledo Amtrak station is conveniently located at the city's Central Union Plaza. The Toledo Amtrak station serves the Capitol Limited route, which runs daily between Washington, DC and Chicago, with stops in Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Toledo and South Bend. The Toledo Amtrak station also serves the Lake Shore Limited route, which travels daily between Chicago and New York City, as well as Chicago and Boston.
The efficient, highly-regarded TARTA bus line operates 40 routes in and around the Toledo metropolitan area, serving downtown Toledo and the communities of Maumee, Ottawa Hills, Perrysburg, Rossford, Spencer Township, Sylvania, Sylvania Township and Waterville. All TARTA buses are wheelchair-accessible, and many buses run on bio-diesel fuel. Operating since 1971, TARTA serves more than five million passengers per year and provides direct service to the SeaGate Convention Centre via the downtown loop.
Bus fare is just $1 per ride for passengers ages 6 and older. Weekly fare is $10, while monthly fare is $40 per passenger. Children under 6 ride free.
Toledo Express Airport features rental car counters for Alamo, Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Hertz and National. Counters for Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz and National are located in the ground transportation area of the Detroit Metro Airport.
Visitors to Toledo can hail taxis on the street or from hotel taxi stands while in the downtown area. Fare from the Toledo Express Airport to downtown is about $50, while taxi fare from the Detroit Metro Airport to downtown Toledo averages $100. Travel between the Detroit Metro Airport and the Toledo Express Airport is about $140 in taxi fare.
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